Cardmaking, Essentials By Ellen

Release Preview: A2 Piercing Plate and Essential Shapes – Arches

We’re featuring the A2 Piercing Plate perfect with and without paper embroidery. Ellen Hutson joins us on the blog with how the A2 Piercing Plate was brought from her vision to part of this month’s Essentials by Ellen release. We also have inspiration from Jessica who shows us how this product can be used without embroidery. This is sure to become an Essentials by Ellen favorite! The new release drops in the store on Friday, June 11th at 9 am pacific.

Jessica is up first with her project that combines the A2 Piercing Plate. She has added the Essential Shapes – Arches along with a sneak peek of another set that is going to be revealed on Thursday.

The A2 Piercing Panel is gorgeous in black with the extra sparkle from Jessica’s gold detail work.

Next up is Ellen and her project that includes paper embroidery.

Paper piercing has been a love of mine that developed back in 2006. It is not until now that I have decided to pick up where I left off in 2007 designing products. I have long wanted to have a tool that would allow me to do paper embroidery work! My hope is that this will allow you to expand upon the tools you already own and mix in a whole new look to your work! There is more to come in future releases, but to start this fun adventure I wanted to keep it simple.

The first plate that we are introducing is an A2 sized piercing plate. It’s sole purpose is to prick little holes into an A2 sized piece of cardstock so that stitched details can be added to card fronts. It is sized to work perfectly with our Essential Rectangles!

Today I am sharing five different ideas that I hope will intrigue you. Rather than outline all the steps for each project I am going to simply share an overview of what’s to come and then I will attempt to break down each project in future posts.

The artwork piece above is created using the Abstract Mountain die we introduced on June 6th. Dry embossing it provided the perfect outline for watercolor to be added to each section. Once the watercolor paper had dried it was then placed on the piercing plate and adhered using washi tape to make certain it didn’t move. After piercing, different elements were created using a variety of embroidery stitches to represent water, trees and rocks.

Above are four different ways you can use the piercing plate:

  • 1 – Run an A2 size piece of cardstock together with the piercing plate through a die cut machine. Use a variety of different embroidery stitches to create letters. I am drawn to simple shapes and therefore kept my stitches quite simple and geometric in design.
  • 2 – Stamp an abstract design (Organic Elements will be available on June 11th) on cardstock and then send it back through a die cut machine together with the piercing plate to add the holes. In this example, I used a cross-stitched couching stitch to attach a sprig of fresh lavender to my tag. This would add a wonderful aromatic touch to any package. Another option would be to add a series of different dried flowers to create a piece of artwork.
  • 3 – Stamp an abstract design (Organic Elements will be available on June 11th) on cardstock, pierce and then add embroidery stitches to embellish the stamped images.
  • 4 – Create a knockout die cut in the same manner as a shaker card is created. Rather than inserting pretty embellishments in the background, create a stitched pattern. In this case, I used the Mini Rainbow to establish the design.

As a young child I learned all sorts of different embroidery stitches – not everyone is so lucky as to have a mom that sewed, stitched, knitted and crocheted. So in an effort to make this easier for you to learn I have created a Paper Embroidery Stitch Guide that will be available as a download on our website. This quick reference guide and detailed instructions will be available when the release goes live. You will soon learn to create your own stitches to embellish card fronts or even create works of art! An added bonus is that you can even stitch while riding in the car or on a plane using a little travel style kit!

The little example to the left above shows what it looks like when you use 6-strand embroidery floss. Starting at the top the stitches were created using 6-strands, then 5, 4, 3, 2 and 1. You will see the detail change as the number of threads are varied. All of the projects I created above were created using 2-strands.

I look forward to sharing more with you over the next little while and hope you will join me in adding texture to your stamped projects! Thank you for joining in my excitement for our new piercing plate!



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  • Reply amy tsuruta June 8, 2021 at 6:56 am

    Gorgeous projects!

  • Reply Mary Koby June 8, 2021 at 10:06 am

    I’m over the moon with excitement for making these stitched projects! Ellen’s inspiration is terrific.

  • Reply Joan Bardee June 9, 2021 at 1:36 am

    Awesome!! These are beautiful!! And the stitching download is just what I need

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